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ARM Cement of Kenya Profit Slips on Higher Costs, Sales Surge

March 20 (Bloomberg) -- ARM Cement Ltd., Kenya’s second-biggest producer of the building material, said full-year profit advanced 8 percent, missing estimates, as sales surged.

Net income advanced to 1.25 billion shillings in the 12 months through December, the Nairobi-based company said in a statement e-mailed by the city’s stock exchange today. Revenue surged 39 percent to 11.4 billion shillings, it said.

Profit missed the median estimate of 1.32 billion shillings forecast by three analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

The company has had higher sales in the first two months of the year versus in 2012 and “expects to register another year of strong growth, and improved profitability on the back of new capacity in Tanzania,” according to the statement.

Last year, the company commissioned a grinding plant in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, boosting capacity to 1.85 million metric tons from 1.1 million tons, according to its website.

ARM, formerly known as Athi River Mining Ltd., proposed a five-for-one share split last year that came into effect Dec. 24. The stock has rallied 53 percent this year, the fourth-best performing company on the Nairobi Securities Exchange. The NSE All-Share Index has advanced 19 percent in the same period.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Ombok in Nairobi at eombok@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net

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